Pakistan's ambassador to the U.S., Husain Haqqani, denied Sunday that any members of Pakistan's leadership knew terrorist leader Osama bin Laden was living not far from the capital city of Islamabad.
"If any member of the Pakistani government, the Pakistani military, or the Pakistani intelligence service knew where Osama bin Laden was, we would have taken action," Haqqani said on ABC's "This Week." "Osama bin Laden's presence in Pakistan was not to Pakistan's advantage."
"We still have many jihadi has-beens from the 1980s who are still alive and well and kicking, and some of them could have been helping them, but they are not in the state or government of Pakistan today," he said.
The ambassador also said that his country would work with the U.S., but Pakistani officials had to be careful about letting the U.S. dictate the terms. Some officials in Pakistan said that they were offended by an American raid taking place in Pakistan without their knowledge.
"Nobody said that we didn't want Osama bin Laden taken out. What we are offended by is the violation of our sovereignty," Haqqani said.
"Try and put yourself in the position of a Pakistani leader who has to go to votes from the same people who will turn around and say, 'You know what? You can't protect this country from American helicopters coming in.' America has a selling job to do in Pakistan, too. Convince more Pakistanis that you are more of our ally and, therefore, there would be less offense."
Haqqani and Pakistan's government are facing outrage from some in Washington after the revelation that bin Laden, killed by U.S. Navy SEALs last weekend, was holed up in a compound just 40 miles from Pakistan’s capital city — and in a neighborhood populated with Pakistani security officials.
The call on Capitol Hill for tougher restrictions on aid to Pakistan intensified last week, with lawmakers from both political parties saying the time is ripe for reining in the U.S.’s inconstant ally.